Thursday, December 27, 2007

Boys, Girls and Jeeps





So Jovey got a new Jeep that Joshua found for great price at Once Upon a Child. It's not pretty and girly, but Jovey drives it and surprisingly enough, drives it well! Plus, it has two seats, so she can't wait to drive Laney around when she "gets to be a bigger girl."

Yesterday, we took her out for a ride in the parking lot (we live right next door to the church where my husband is on staff). She drove around, waving and of course, looking too cute in her fuzzy hat. About 10 minutes into her afternoon drive, she paused, unbuckled herself, got out and went around to sit in the passenger seat, fastening her seat belt and all. We heard her mumbling the quiet dialogue that goes on between she and her imaginary friends she has at different times, and Joshua decided to ask.

"Jovey, what are you doing? Why are you sitting on that side of the jeep."

"Well, Daddy, only boys can drive Jeeps and Pretend Parker is gonna drive us now!"

"Oh, well, it's ok. Girls can drive jeeps too, so maybe we can let Pretend Parker just ride this time and you can drive him around~!"

"OK, daddy!" She unbuckles, walks around to the other side, buckles up again, says, "OK, a little music" (Nicole, I hope that isn't "mood music") and proceeds on another excursion around the parking lot.

Now, before anyone sends me nasty comments about women's rights, let it be known that one of her bestest friends, Parker, owns a jeep, the first one she ever rode in, and with her young age, we thought it best for only Parker to drive both she and his little sister, and another best friend of Jovey's, Lillie, around the yard for safety sake. I guess she was thinking, "safety first, women's lib second!"

I just love the innocence of childhood. She doesn't know that some people would have my hide for such a comment, thinking I'm teaching my child to be a weak woman. On the contrary. I pray every day she will be strong, independent and confident in all she aspires to do. Joshua and I, of course, tell her that she has wonderful opportunities in this great big world, but we also will hope that she will find that Biblical submission will not be too hard to comprehend when it comes to her relationship with a future husband, if that relationship is to be the healthiest and most effective.

My prayer right now is that she stays in the driver's seat right now, in complete control of her destiny and what God has out there for her in this life He has created for her, not just sitting back, waiting for life just to happen at the hands of others'.

Christmas Day 2007

All the excitement pictured below lead to this picture which says, "where's my bed?"

Play time!

Stockings are fun!

Every princess needs perfectly washed and set hair!

"ummmm. . . what do you do with this?"

Christmas Eve Fun







Sunday, December 16, 2007

Big Steps for our Little Laney







Again, credit to my hubby, Joshua:It has been a week of 1st's here are the McFarland house and being the good photo/videographer that I am, I tried to capture them all on film (digitally of course).

It is absolutely amazing at how quickly time goes by. It seems like just a few days ago, Lela was telling me that she was pregnant with our second (and final) bundle of joy. Well, that little bundle is now 6 months old and getting ready to celebrate her 1st Christmas. This afternoon she got to experience big girl food for the first time. (rice cereal and baby formula, mmmmmmm) She ate very well and was not ashamed to lean in for more. Check out the video below and see all the eating excitement.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Theology from a 3 Year Old



My husband posted this on his blog earlier tonight, and he did such a good job of expressing my own emotions, I borrowed it with his permission! :-)

Jovey sang her first solo at church tonight (yes, she is only 3). She did wonderful and made her mommy and daddy very proud. It touches our heart to see our little girl singing for Jesus and more importantly, learning what it all means. We were walking through the flea market the other night and she saw a statue of Jesus. She said to us, "Look, it is God's Son, Jesus and He is praying for everyone." Theology can't get much sounder than that, especially from a 3 year old. I pray that as Jovey and Laney both grow, they continue to learn and understand exactly what Jesus did for them so that they can experience eternal life. God is good and this young Dad is pumped about seeing Christ through his little girls.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

The Very Gone Mother

Jovey's very into the whole Disney princess scene. Everything she can imagine ends up coming back to the world of the princesses. When asked what she wants for Christmas, she always responds with a very excited and well thought out, "I would like a Belle princess dress and Belle headband!" That's it, nothing more, nothing less.

While playing with a dress up Cinderella doll tonight, her "very favorite princess", Jovey tells me that I need to play the role of the "Very Gone Mother!" If she only knew how many moments that I feel "very gone" and very unworthy to be the mother of these special, little ladies. Good thing that God knows better and gives me guidance in what I am doing in this whole "mommy" career!

God, please help me be more in tune to what you are saying and how you are guiding my steps, not only as a child of yours, but also as a mother to two beautiful, smiling girls that look to me as a source of teaching, of love and as a model of just a fraction how much you love them, as it is so much more than I could ever provide.

Monday, December 03, 2007

Smiles, giggles and a need for some valium!

Nothing is sweeter than seeing your children, happy, healthy and smiling. Nothing is crazier than 2 parents, attempting to get these happy, healthy and smiling children smiling together, standing still and "posing" for at least one good Christmas picture! Here are a few of the highlights of our photo session, after which, we decided we either needed a strong drink to recover, or just needed a valium pre-photo shoot! Enjoy!





Saturday, November 24, 2007

The picture of Joy!

Thursday, November 01, 2007

ON THE MAN

"Nunu, can you get Diego on the TV? You just point the remote there, then put it ON THE MAN and push it to NICKELODIA . . . Yea! You did it, Nunu! Good girl!"
-Jovey, giving her grandma a tutorial on how to use the ON DEMAND function of the cable box to get Diego on NICKELODEON. Gotta love Jovey's encouraging attitude! Way to go, Nunu!

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Halloween is Fun for Mommies and Daddies, Too!




Promise that we keep up with our kids better. . .

Thursday, October 25, 2007

As plain as the nose on my face!

Jovey has had some observations involving noses in recent days. . .

Jovey: "Mommy, Nicolette (her cabbage patch doll)has a hot dog in her nose?"
Mommy: "A hot dog?"
Jovey: "Yep. See?" She pointed out that the way that her little plastic nose is molded on, it does, indeed, resemble a pig in a blanket!
Mommy: "Oh, that's just her nose, but that was smart!"
Jovey: "I need to pull it out, mommy, so it won't hurt her anymore!"


Thank you for being such a caring, doll mommy, Jovey Kay! We all wish to take away the hot dogs in our kiddos noses to make them more comfortable!

As if that wasn't enough, we had yet another conversation regarding noses just tonight!

Jovey: "He put on his musatakadash!" commenting on Funshine bear putting on his Groucho Marx glasses when trying to offer therapy to Wish Bear on the Care Bear Big Wish Movie.

Mommy: "What? A what?"
Jovey: "You know. What does daddy have in his nose?"
Mommy: pausing, then laughing hysterically, "Oh, a MUSTACHE? Daddy has a mustache in his nose? Yes, you are right!"


I laughed and Jovey joined in. It was a good, therapeutic belly laugh like we all need every once and while. I am still laughing as I type this post!!

Monday, October 22, 2007

My Beautiful Family

"What does a flamingo say, daddy?"



Daddy: "ahhhh, ahhhhh!!!!"
Jovey: "OK, AHHHHH, AHHHHH!!!!"

Sunday, October 14, 2007

"Just Fabulous!"

"Mommy, doesn't this picture I drew just look fabulous?"

-Jovey Kay admiring her work using a word that mommy uses frequently and showing extreme pride in both her artwork and her correctly used vocabulary word!

The 411 on Luggage

"Daddy, that suitcase can't walk up the stairs because it doesn't have legs. . . or arms, or eyes, or a forehead, or a head, or hair!"


-Jovey Kay matter-of-factly commenting to Daddy as she snacked and he carried our suitcase up to the bedroom. Quite the estute observation, don't you think? ;-)

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Girls, Girls, Girls!


There is nothing like having the pleasure of watching your little girl call her best friend your own best friend's daughter. It's like watching the beautiful gift of friendship open before your very eyes. Of course, 2 year olds have various ways of expressing the special bond of friendship (mostly Jovey, as she gets very territorial or only wants lovings on her terms, both of which I have no clue how to fix), but sweet Lillie loves her inspite of her less than desirable traits at times. When Jovey is feeling the whole "friendship" thing, the two, sweet girls play dolls, run and laugh, tickle and just enjoy each other's company! Nicole and I may not play dolls or just sit down for a good tickle fight, but there is nothing like having a friend to sit and enjoy a cup of coffee in the comfort, security and love of a great friend. I pray that our girls will continue to grow, both as young ladies, as well as wonderful friends through this journey called life. If they can develop even a portion of what their mommies have experienced, then they will be more than blessed!

Monday, October 01, 2007

When I'm a big girl. . .


One of my favorite stories from our recent vacation with our bestest friends, the Willis fam, would have to be Jovey's response to Lillie's amazing (I'm not exaggerating, I just know that this child is half dolphin) and super cute pool skills. Lillie would dawn her goggles, as you can see from the pic, and just go under the water, no huge breaths, no huge drama, just pure skill. I think once I counted her staying under for more than 5 seconds, and for a 2 year old, that has to be some sort of record. When I tried to coax Jovey just to put her little face under the water, as she seemed just as amazed and truly interested after witnessing Lillie's feat as I was, Jovey quickly and excitedly responded, "Oh, no, Mommmy. I will go under the water when I'm a big girl like Lillie!" Just so you know, Jovey is almost exactly 2 months older than Lillie, but we won't tell Jovey that!

Monday, September 24, 2007

Made to Order

Jovey has seemed to continue to expand her vocabulary and her understanding and expressing of thoughts the last month, if that was even possible, and she has really started to understand the concept of being thankful for the people and things in her life. We always tell her that everything we have belongs to God, so we need to tell Him thanks for it all! So, she prays and thanks God for people, days and toys, unprompted, as well as thanking us for the small things we do, when she isn't distracted by the stuff going on around her, that is!

This morning was no exception. Last night was our first night of having the girls co-habitate in their bedroom. They both did beautifully and we are so glad that hopefully, this can be the beginning of a fun relationship as they grow together, learning to respect each other's space, yet share it as well.

As I was getting Laney ready to take a ride to drop off Jovey at Parent's Day Out, Jovey says, "I love you Laney! You are my best sister!" She then looks at me and says, "Mommy, thank you for bringing Laney home from the hospital for me! I love her so much!" That's right, Jovey, I just went to the hospital, pulled through their drive-thru and said, "I'd like one, cute, little girl with a head full of hair that my older daughter can love on and play with!" If only it were that easy! ;-)

I just hope and pray that she will feel even half that appreciation years down the road when there will be clothes to fuss over, space to share, and attention to get!

Monday, September 03, 2007

Learning to just keep quiet!

This blog is all about being a mommy (as well as a wife) who is continually learning about this gift called life, so that, in turn, I can teach my beautiful girls how to behave, how to enjoy each moment, and hopefully, even learn from the many mistakes I have made. Fortunately, for them, not me, I have lots of stuff I have learned from as I am human and my flesh takes over so many times, revealing my weaknesses.

Recently,I have "injured" a relationship that I hold very dear. This person has been super supportive, very loving and quite open in sharing with me, so that I may glean from her experience as a more experienced, learned adult herself as well as feel the love and support that should come from such a relationship. As usual, in my haste, my flesh took over, and unintentionally, I said things that not only hurt this person, but also made her feel like a failure to me, deeming her to believe that I wish for her to be excluded from aspects of my life. I brought upon her hurt by uttering words that I thought would be a relief to her, but instead, brought forth only heartache and resentment. I messed up. I chose to use words before looking to God to help me sort my thoughts out, which would have probably lead to a more positive outcome, as is the case when consulting with the person who created your very soul and knows those silly thoughts and "good intentions" that make up who you are. I made a choice to speak when I should have just simply remained silent, and unfortunately, all choices have consequences, some being negative. All I can do now is sit back, pray fervently that God will mend this relationship and grow me to somehow keep quiet and be content in the silence of learning and listening.

Now, this is a mommy blog, so I pray that my girls will learn as I continue to grow that yes, they will at times choose hurtful words, whether intentionally or unintentionally, that have consequences that may or may never be corrected. If I can spare them of the pain of injuring those relationships that they hold the dearest by sharing with them my own experiences and the importance of recognizing when simple silence is more important than trying to "fix" or "explain" things, then at least I have reconciled myself to move past the experience and on into a brighter future of staying quiet and still, looking to God before opening my mouth.

Be still, and know that I am God (Psalm 46:10)

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Baby Dolls and Kisses




Nothing better than watching your two girls already enjoy playing together, even if one of them is acting as the baby doll! What a blessing, as these 3 short months have so quickly passed, to watch Jovey learn to include Laney in her daily actvities and watch Laney become more aware that there is a little person around to love and adore!

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Backseat Driver

Today, while driving home from a long first alone trip to the grocery with my two girls (we usually make it a family affair), I was paying more attention to the rear view mirror to make sure Laney's screams were simply those of "Let me outta here, woman" and not "something is majorly wrong here, woman." When I looked ahead, a yellow light that came up on me sooner than I expected quickly turned red, making me be a bit dramatic at the usual smooth stop. As the van bounced a bit from my braking, I heard the following statement from the back seat,

"Pay attention to what you're doing, momma!"

Thanks! Nothing like having a little "mom" around to remind me of the most obvious things that, although annoying, are still important to hear!

The perfect gift!

While talking about daddy's birthday that is coming up very soon, I asked her what she thought the perfect gift would be for him. She paused from working her puzzle, put her finger to her chin, and said, "Diego. . . Daddy would LOVE to have a Diego puzzle for his birthay! Yes, he would!" Funny, I didn't know that Daddy shared Jovey's deep affection for all things Diego!

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Loving Words

What tops hearing your kiddos say, "I love you, momma?" I'm thinking nothing on this earth is sweeter or more sincere than hearing the sweet voices of your children, especially when they echo the sentiment that is their love for you as their parent. The best scenarios, by far, are when Jovey just, out of the blue and for no warranted reason at al, just stops what she's doing to say those wonderful words and maybe even take the time to add a little snuggle or kiss along with it!

I must admit, though, that hearing your older daughter express love for her little sister, using an extra soft and high pitched voice may come super close. When Joshua and I prayed about adding to our family, we began praying that if that is what God would want, that our kiddos would, even from the very beginning, start forming a beautiful foundation that would hopefully, grow, evolve, and one day, turn into a deep and true friendship. I don't know if that will ultimately happen, but I continue my prayer and sit back and smile as Jovey bounces around the room, asking Laney if she's ok at her smallest of whimpers and as Laney follows Jovey's each and every movement all over that room!

Thank you God, for the blessing of not only having one, but two girls that I can watch grow. May I always enjoy seeing that as super different as they may be, how much they will hopefully grow to love each other for those very differences!

Monday, August 13, 2007

Firsts. . .



Jovey went to her first official day of "school." OK, it was a parent's day out program, but to her, it meant a new lunch box, new friends and therefore, it was school! She did super well, with no tears shed (she almost never has any separation anxiety from either of us), a beautiful painted pic that smelled of tempur paint that brought back my own childhood memories of mission friends at church, and even was moved up to the next age level of class, as the teachers thought she was "too advanced and mature" for her original classroom. All in all, it was a positive day for her as well as for Laney and me who spent time at home in the quiet together, something that happens rarely in a house with Jovey Kay!

Excited to hear about her first day away from me at a more structured setting with people she didn't know, I asked her all sorts of things as soon as I got her in the van. I'm sure she was thinkin', "Mom, please!" but she humored me and answered me with little frustration in her voice! She couldn't think of any of her new friend's names, except a little boy named Van, who in her words, "was a cute boy!" Great, already noticing the cute boys in school. So tonight, I thought that with a good nap and some time lapse, she may recall even more about her school day (a whopping 4 hours once a week). She told me more new stories, including one about a yellow one who shared the chair. Confused, I asked her to elaborate. I finally figured out what was going on, and said, "Oh. . . was there a little girl that had a yellow shirt on?" She looked wide eyed, as if she could look any differently, and said excitedly, "Yes! The yellow one shared her chair with me!" Maybe next week, she can move from referring to her as her clothing color and learn her name!

Saturday, July 28, 2007

The Reasons




I haven't uploaded pics of my girls, besides the one in my profile, because I figure that the 1-2 people who read this blog know exactly what they look like, but I have decided that my blog wouldn't be complete unless it contained the faces and smiles of the precious little ones that call me mommy! These faces are the reasons I get up at 3 am to feed a growling belly; the reasons I stay at home, some days feeling as if I'm the only adult on the planet, as my conversations have consisted of talk only of things that interest a 2 year old; the reasons I look at my husband and think of how blessed I am to have such a man be such a father to these impressionable, beautiful little girls that will one day be impressionable, beautiful young ladies, hopefully looking to their heavenly father first and foremost for support and much needed, positive, male affirmation, then directly to Joshua, rather than the temporary and insincere musings of certain teenage boys; the reasons that I thank God each day for such a great opportunity to be a mommy and watch my girls grow and change with each passing day.

Thank you, God, for being so great and making our lives brighter by adding such beauties to what we thought was already a wonderful, little family!

Monday, July 16, 2007

We are Family

Jovey has truly gotten used to our expanded family. She has never thought it different or bad that Laney is now getting some of her attention, a perk of adding a little one when your other "little one" is just 2 1/2, I guess! She is totally in love with her sister and smothers her, sometimes literally if we don't watch it, with loads of hugs and kisses.

Since Laney has joined us, Jovey has really started to understand the family unit! So well, in fact, that she is beginning to think that a family of 4 is just the norm, even when it comes to her toys. While we were at the mall the other day, Laney and I walked around a bit to keep her happy in her stroller while Joshua took Jovey into one of her fav stores, the Disney Store. While there, she always loves to visit the huge "mountain o' stuffy animals" (stuffed to you and me, animals with a nasal condition to our Jovey Kay!). Now, instead of just wanting to hold various animals and love on them, she likes to get 4 of a kind (like 4 thumpers or 4 tiggers) and set them up in a line. She told Joshua that they were a family! Now, of course, we will have to go into detail of how families aren't all the same. . . some have 3 members, some are grandmas and grandpas and kiddos, some are just mommies and kiddos, et.c, but for now, it is fine with us for her to know that families stick together and have fun together in everything, even if they are "stuffy!" :-)

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Mini Me

So many stories, so little time it seems with 2 kiddos at home, one of which always comes up with new and fun things to do and say. So, I will just pick the ones that stick out in my mind the most.

My Jovey is a super pretender. She is quick to "pretend" to go to the grocery and to have numerous "pretend" conversations on her cell phone with family and friends throughout the day. It really is super cute to watch her sentences continue to grow into major monologues with herself!

Joshua and I have a favorite "pretend" game to watch. She likes to pretend that various friends (like Lillie, Parker and Addison) as well as TV characters (mainly Diego and Alicia), play with her. She takes them outside. all the while talking their invisible ears off, to swing, swim and slide. She also took them along with she and daddy today on a quick trip to Kroger and Best Buy today. She talks with them, asking them questions and answering like they really respond to her out loud. I guess that's what it sounds like in her head. Although this doesn't seem super comical, the comedy comes when you actually see her "play" with these friends, as they all fit in the palm of her hand. Yep, she has little mini friends that ride on her swings and in her car, and she pretends to carry them around in her hand, placing them various places by tapping them down from her thumb and pointer finger that are positioned to carry them so comfortably. If she has pockets, they have also been known to travel that way as well.

Oh, the fun that comes with watching Jovey grow, change, and now, pretend. We don't know the obsession with these "mini" friends of hers, but it sure makes for great laughs around our house. As long as she doesn't try to carry Laney around the same way, we'll all be ok!

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Friends

What would we do without friends? Not just those people who you smile at and chat with when you happen to be at an event or get together, but true friends. The ones that in your life, you wonder how you existed without having them around to be your sounding board, the shoulders on which you cry, the people who tell you when you are being silly for being totally stupid about something, and the ones who feel more like family then friends. Now, not only are friends like that super special, but when you have friends like that as adults, then it makes that circle of love larger as not only are they are a part of your life, but so is there family! The spouse, the kiddos, down to the smallest of pets in the house (even down to the slimiest snails!).

Joshua and I are so blessed to have friends just like that perfect ideal. Thank God for our "family friends" that make life more interesting and much more fun. Just in case there is any misconception as to what this type of friendship looks like, then here would be just a sampling from an email of such a friend (who has often been mistaken as my sister, and it is the best case of mistaken identity I could ever imagine) following an afternoon playdate and watching her 4 year old son holding our little Laney Belle.

Well don't tell Jovey but there is a new contender for Parker's heart. ALL I heard, and talked about for the past 3 hours was "Laney is so cute mom." "I just love Laney mom" "Mom, do you think laney likes me like I love her?" "Mom, I loved holding Laney." "Do you think Lela will let me hold Laney again if we go on a tuesday?"

Yup, he's smitten... he prayed for her (but forgot about me, his own mother!) and before he fell asleep I told him to have sweet dreams about fishing and rollercoasters and he goes, "and laney too mom!"


God is great and it is no accident when people come together to share their big things in common, they find that it is in the small things that you see just how wonderful life can be with people beside you to help encourage, support and sometimes, even laugh at you, so that you can stay real and experience life to its fullest!

Monday, June 25, 2007

Deep Thoughts by Jovey McFarland

"Mommy, Brionna can hold her OWN bottle all by herself! Yep, she can!"

-Jovey McFarland describing a 9 month old baby at church who is in nursery with her, while I was having to hold Laney's bottle and couldn't do something for Jovey right at that moment!

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Upside Down

Where can you begin to write after entering a new phase of life? There are never the right words to truly express all you feel, all you question, or all you praise God for as you look at where you have been and where you now sit. Joshua and I are now proud parents of not one, but two, beautiful, young, ladies. Laney Belle joined her big sis, Jovey, and us on June 5, 2007. She was a bit early at not quite 38 weeks, but a healthy 7 pounds, 7 ounces and 20 inches long!

Since bringing her home just two short days later, our lives have been turned upside down. Not with the worries that I had before of loving both girls in their unique ways or worrying about humidity or anything I may have previously ventured to conjure up in my worrisome mind, but instead, our lives have been forever changed with visions of Jovey loving on Laney with great joy, all the while saying cute phrases like, "I love her! She loves me!" or "Oh, she's sooooo cuuuuttteee!" Our lives have been turned upside down as I watch my husband who just a short 2 1/2 years ago, was trying to figure out how to put a onesie on a newborn and change her diaper and now, who does it with almost the same speed and ease I have learned! Our lives have been turned upside down as we experience the quiet and peace that comes with watching Laney, who, very different from Jovey as an infant, sleeps all of the time, making cute little sounds and smiling those cute, gassy grins (although I still think God talks with her and makes her smile, no matter what the medical books say!)

In short, we are just filled with joy and awe that God chose us once again to raise yet another one of his precious creations. We aren't anything special, and in fact, mess up tons with the blessings he gives us every day, but as we vowed from the beginning, Joshua and I will forever try to follow His will for our lives, including with the most meaningful and worthwhile task we'll ever do as a couple, to raise a child of His with love and instructions from His word.

Thank you, God, for taking the doubts and the fears away. Life is good and You are so great to allow us to be a part of seeing life through the wide and wonderful eyes of our beautiful children!

Thursday, May 31, 2007

And thus it begins!

Jovey got to hang out with the big kids a bit last night, as I was tired from some preliminary, extra treatments that I need before going into labor (in just 2 weeks at the longest now!) and Joshua was putting on his big summer kick-off with bouncy slides, wiffle ball, pizza, popsicles and all sorts of summer fun! Jovey got to go down the slide before anyone else got here, perks of being the pastor's kiddo, but also got time to go down while the teams of kids who were racing times were transitioning. They all love her and think she's their mascot, so it all worked! Of course, she got all the attention from 20 teens and loved each second as she climbed up one side like a big girl and slid down in records speed on the other, accompanied by cheers, yells and claps from them all. She easily gave up after a while, as she was hot, sweaty and tired, and Joshua walked her over to our porch, where I was watching. We went upstairs and had a good shower down and got ready for bed. After I got her gown on, she decided that she wanted to go back outside. I asked her why, to which she replied, "I wanna go and kiss all the big boys!" Now, there were just as many girls in attendance as there were boys, but for some reason, the girls didn't make quite the impression, I guess. It's already started and boy oh boy, Joshua makes sure to remind her more and more every day that he is her only boyfriend until she turns 30! :-)

"Daddy's Home!"

One day, after Jovey had woken up from a great nap (something that doesn't always describe her nap times), I was combing her hair and getting her ready for a little snack. The tree trimmers were cutting on the tree outside our house with a very loud chainsaw. Jovey looks at me, wide-eyed, as usual, and said, "Mommy, shhhh, Daddy's home!" Now I knew Daddy was still at work and wouldn't be home for quite a while. So I inquired, "What do you mean? He's not home yet!" She replied adamently, "Yes, he's home. I can hear him blowing his nose!" referring to the loud chainsaw roaring outside the bedroom window! Now, unless you have heard Joshua blow his nose, this won't be half as comical, but let's just say that the muffled sound of a chainsaw may be the perfect way to describe the sound that his "deviated septim" makes with every nose blow! Gotta love Jovey's big imagination!

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

One Day at a Time

So the days grow closer and my belly grows bigger, if that's even possible, as we await the arrival of our new little girl into this world! So many questions flood me at this particular stage: can I get all the stuff organized and ready in time? Will Jovey be able to even halfway grasp that this baby is a part of mommy and daddy, but also a part of her as her sibling? Can I take care of cuddling both of my "babies" in their own, unique ways they need to be cuddled? Will I make it in and out of the van with little mishaps the first time I try it on my own? Will this little girl have mounds of hair like Jovey, or be as bald as a cue ball? Will I be a good mommy to 2 little girls? Will Joshua go crazy with all of our crazy girl ways, even after just the first week of living with us and all of our drama? Will getting out be a ton easier in this weather, or will I worry about UV rays, mosquitoes and high humidity, where last time I worried about RSV, germs and freezing temps?

With all of this, I am compelled to go to the only place I know that these answers, although not immediately, can be answered with full assurance; a place where no matter how many tears I may shed because Jovey needs me to take her potty right in the middle of a nasty newborn diaper change or how badly I want to just lay down with a whimpering jovey during nap time, a screaming newborn needs my loving touch, there is always a feeling of peace; a place where confidence isn't found in how prim and proper my kids look or how pretty my make-up is applied, but how much love is pouring out from the depths of all of our souls through our eyes and our smiles.

This is the place I lay all my problems down and helplessly look up to a Heavely Father who doesn't promise that life will be easy or even fun all of the time, but who promises peace, love and strength when my body, mind and heart are all weak. He says he will never give us more than He knows we can handle (although, I have questioned that many times, finding the answer that I am stronger than I had ever thought possible). Heading into this new stage of raising not one, but 2 young kiddos scares me to death, but I have faith that in my darkest hours, God is there to take over and pick up where I may be lacking, giving me a moment of complete quiet, or a phone call that offers kind words or helping hands. I don't believe in coincidences, as everything in life happens for a purpose, even if it isn't known until years to come.

Thank you, God, for taking care of me and helping me to stay grounded when my mind gets too cluttered with all of the stuff of this world. You created me and know that I am a worrier by nature, but you have placed a lovnig husband in my life to help remind me that worrying doesn't bring about peace, but only through you, do I find the strength and wisdom I need to deal with all the clutter, ONE DAY AT A TIME.

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Grass is still grass, no matter who's yard it is in!

It is so funny that you always want what you can't have! I always wanted straight hair, but instead was given wavy hair. I wanted to be naturally skinny, and instead, I'm naturally . . . "not-so-skinny." I wanted a dog growing up, and instead, had hermit crabs! None of the things I had were at anyway bad, but it so funny how what we think we want isn't always what we need!

I never thought I would have huge desires about my children except that I wanted them to be happy and healthy. Then, when Jovey began chattering, which quickly turned into words, which even more quickly turned into sentences, I found myself wanting a quiet child. When those sentences turned into her ways of acting out, I found myself wanting a more compliant child. Then, I talk to friends that have quiet children who wish they had chattier children or children that had a stronger will (although I don't know if that's something to ever wish for! ha ha!)

In the end, I have found that God gives us each what we need, from each of the millions of hairs on our head to the things that make our children so very wonderful, beautiful and unique. It's only human to think the grass is greener in someone else's yard, but we forget all the flowers and old tree stumps and holes that make our yards our own.

I know that there are days when I would love Jovey to follow everything to a tee and just give me a chance to clear my head by playing quietly by herself (yes, even in self play, she talks to herself, her dolls, her books, etc.) but I would never trade the gift that God has given me in her being able to say, "Mommy, I love you so very much!" or when she must know when I'm feeling "less than cute" or just major "preggo" and says "Mommy, you are so cute! I love your eyes!" I am learning to quit "wanting" things and instead, to be more thankful for all the blessings I have been given, even through the constant chattering and challenges that come along with my growing and beautiful 2 year old daughter.

Monday, April 30, 2007

ZZZZZzzzzzzzzz

As a child, nothing seems more horrible as taking time out of your busy play schedule than to take a nap, especially as age 4 or 5 nears. Then, as college draws near, naps become a bit more tangible, and then, there is being pregnant! Nothing is better than to find even 15 minutes to lay down and just rest, just to feel like you can carry on the rest of the day.

Today, Jovey was having a hard time getting settled for her nap time (she's never been a great napper), so I laid beside her and we both fell asleep finally for a little over an hour. Oh, I could have slept so much longer, but her internal alarm rang out loud and clear, "time to go out and play!" So, even though it was one of those naps where you almost feel worse after the extra zzzzz's, I know that Baby Mac and my body were both super thankful for the extra rest!

Friday, April 20, 2007

Chatty Cathy

Jovey and I went up to a local, outdoor ice cream joint (first mistake for a pregnant lady!). As Jovey and I sat there enjoying the weather and of course, the people watching, a nice lady with a sundae sat down at the picnic table next to us. Jovey, without warning, went over, climbed up on the bench, and being the great conversationalist that she can be, began something that sounded like this:

Jovey: "Hello! Do you like my pretty fingernails? And my toenails? My daddy painted them! Do you like my summer shoes! They have princesses on them!"
Lady: "Oh, yes, they are all so pretty. My granddaughter likes nail polish too."
Jovey: "OOOOhhhhhh, she does? That's nice!"

I finally coaxed Jovey over to our table as to leave the nice lady alone. I explained she had never met a stranger, which the lady smiled and just said was a great trait to have, under parental constraint, of course! I'm just glad she was amused and not annoyed by my little chatter box! When I prayed that Jovey would have the outgoing personality of her daddy, never did I imagine it would play out so soon, or so humorously!

Thank you, God, for a little girl who loves people. Please, allow her to be used to make a positive difference in people's lives around her, even now in her young life!

Monday, April 16, 2007

More chatter from my little chatter box!

Some of Jovey's newest things to say:

"I have to (fill in the blank with whatever at the moment, i.e. go outside)! I really, really do!" eyes dancing and opened super big and all the while shaking her hands in rhythm with each word for emphasis, I guess!

"Good thinking, Mommy!" (Thanks, Diego!)

"What did you say here, Mommy?" (Usually in response to the book we read that she is trying hard to memorize so she can read it herself!)

"ooohhhh, can I have a tweat (treat)?" Basically, any hour of the day for any reason under the sun. 90% of the time, the answer is no, but you would think she gets rewarded for breathing!

"Actually, . . . " Used perfectly in context, and drives her daddy nuts! He swears I taught her to say it, but she picks this stuff up without prompting from me!

"I want to do that agaaaiiinnn!" She has a major Kentucky accent. I'm guessing it's environmental, from her daddy of course! ;-)

"I waked up, Mommy! Come and get me!" Just wants to make sure I am aware!

"That's not for me, that's for my Baby sister!" Basically, anything she doesn't want to wear, eat, or do, it is then immediately thrown off as a treat for her baby sister! How thoughtful! ;-)

I could go on for days, but I'll spare you for now! Until next time, always pay attention to what people say! Whether they are 2 years old or 100 years young, I bet that what the say is not only entertaining , but also allows a little glimpse into who that person truly is. Jovey seems to be a sweet, little nut so far, and we love her that way!

Sharing with Stormy

Jovey has a way of expressing her feelings, even as an almost 2 1/2 year old little girl! I have mentioned before how very verbal and expressive she is not only with her mouth, but with her eyes and her whole body. It only continues to get even more amusing.

As she sits and eats her snack even now, our dog, Stormy, is sitting patiently waiting for a goldfish to drop on the floor as to give her a fun and unusual treat! Jovey keeps looking at me saying, "Mommy, Stormy is bothering me. Can you make her move?" Now Stormy is laying well behind her at this point, but Jovey is so protective of her snack, any close proximity is too close for her. I explain that Stormy is just wanting to share with her and she has to say, "not right now, Stormy!"

So, in big girl style, she is asking me to mediate, just like I am sure I will hear a lot once her little sis arrives and is starting to grab at things Jovey may be unsure of sharing. We really encourage sharing around our home and outside with other friends as well, but we pray that it will really sink in as we continue to teach Jovey that nothing belongs to us, but rather, first, belongs to God, and second, to ALL of us, so that maybe we can share a bit more cheerfully. . . or at least be "bothered" a little bit less! Just FYI, Stormy got a couple of treats after all, and Jovey was ok with that, since they were on the floor anyway!

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Daddy - Pedicurist

So, I have a wonderful husband who is very willing to do almost anything, at least once, to please the women in his life (he is a daddy to one, soon to be 2 beautiful, little girls)! As I was preparing to co-host a house warming/retirement party for my parents with my older sis, Sara, I was bemoaning the fact that I hate wearing flip flops without some toenail polish perking up my dull, wintery feet! I flashed Joshua my best "little girl grin" and he grabbed some newspaper, so he wouldn't ruin his khakis, told me to sit down, propped my foot up in his lap and proceeded to use a fun hot pink color my mom had at her house to paint my toenails. He even did a great job for a first timer! What a guy!

My daughter was unaware of all of this, as she was peacefully taking a nap in the other room before all of the festivities were to begin. After she got up, she came out to see what might be happening and immediately spied my brightly painted toenails, to which she shouted in her cute, little voice, "I want paint on my toenails too. . . like mommy's toenails!" And with that same "little girl grin" that had persuaded Joshua to take up his new profession as my personal pedicurist (at least until I can bend over and touch my feet again), Jovey wrapped up Joshua's heart as she wrapped her hand around his finger. He smiled and took her into the other room where she too got to experience her first "daddy pedicure!"

Now, everywhere she goes, she has to tell everyone the same thing, "My daddy painted my toenails! Do you like my them?" Then, she proceeds to show them off through her sandals, or the best, sit down to strip off her shoes and socks to let you peak at her prized possessions!

Thank you God for a man that tries to please the women in his life, right down to their cute, little toenails!

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

"Not right now, Mommy"

Mommy: "Jovey, would you please bring mommy a tissue?"
Jovey: "I can't. I'm still poopin' behind here, mommy!"
Mommy: "Oh, by all means, please finish!"

Don't wanna stop a work in process. Now, if we can just be so honest as to get to the potty! :-)

Monday, March 19, 2007

Not feelin' it now, Dad!

Conversation over breakfast this morning:

Daddy: "Jovey, would you like to taste some of daddy's cereal? It's called Cap'n Crunch and is good and sweet!" You'll like it!"
Jovey: "No thank you. I don't want to try it, Daddy! I just want my cheerios!"
Daddy: "OK, no biggie! Just thought you might like it!"
5 minutes later after other random conversation
Jovey: with great enthusiasm "I'm gonna try your cereal, Daddy!"
(He had left it on the table in front of her booster.)
Daddy: smirking at mommy "OK, you do that!"
Jovey: "Ooohhh, that's good! May I have some more!? Please?"

And thus begins our life with Jovey and doing things on her own time and in her own way!

Monday, March 12, 2007

Princess Dresses All Around!

There are many times in a mom's life that her heart just swells; full of pride, full of love and full of joy at the beauty, the sweetness and the characteristics that make up their small child! I had a couple such occasions over the weekend, but one in particular sticks out to me.

Joshua and I were busy running around for a youth Disciple-Now event, so my parents lovingly came up to watch Jovey for us, so that she could stay close to routine and I could be free to help my hubby out in an aspect of our ministry together. As usual, Nana and Granddad took Jovey out to get a happy meal at McDonald's and to let her play. The next stop, or course, would need to be a place to look at dresses for our little princess (whenever we see a dress, Jovey calls it a princess dress and would wear one everyday if I allowed her to!). Nana, found 3 to let her choose from and she chose the "pretty purple princess dress and pretty blue princess dress." Nana and Granddad were looking to leave the children's clothing area at Kohl's, when Jovey said, "Wait, Nana! We gotta get a pretty princess dress for my little sister!" As I have said before in previous posts, we are expecting our 2nd little girl in June, so not wanting her to be left out, Jovey quickly reminded them that she needed to have a new princess dress as well. Nana and Granddad looked at each other with surprise at the thoughtfulness of their not even 2 1/2 year old granddaughter and went back to pick out a pretty, yellow princess dress for her little sister!

There are many times I worry about having mulitiple children. How can I be a good mommy to more than one child? Won't Jovey feel left out when I have to share time with our new, helpless, little one? Will Jovey accept her? Will she stay sweet and kind, or be jealous and mean? God tells me again and again that things will all work out, and even in moments that I'm not there, He's preparing her to be a great big sister!

Thursday, March 08, 2007

"It's OK, Addison!"

This is an excerpt from one of our youth blogs. It's fun to see that other people get a kick out of how caring and sweet Jovey can be!

The other day my friend Kaylee and I were watching the kiddos while my parents and thier friends were having a bible study. My little brother Addison (2) started getting cranky and he wanted his mamma. So when he started to scream this is what his best friend Jovey (also 2) said:

Addison: Mommy!!!Mommy!!!

Jovey: Its ok Addison I'm here!

Then she gave him a hug. I just thought it was so cute of what little kids can say to each other!

Friday, February 23, 2007

God's voice in a 2 year old body

So Jovey continues to perfect this talking. . . communicating. . . ummm. . . endless chattering that fills our house with so much fun and new things for my husband to lay in bed at night and laugh about! Today, as is our custom right now, Jovey got up and came to bed with us to snuggle right before Joshua got up to get ready to go over to the church office for the morning. She always gets under the covers and watches the PBS line-up, as we get like a total of 28 channels, and is very content to lay and rest a bit more in the darkness of the early morning and before breakfast and playtime.

This morning, as Joshua got up to move her over to his side and tuck her in again, she rolled over and looked at me and said the sweetest little phrase ever!

"Mommy, come here! You are the best mommy in the whole wide world! I lub you!" She gave me a huge hug and planted a big wet kiss on my mouth immediately after this proclamation, smiling all the while.

It made my heart melt, especially after a rough night of trying to become acquainted with some much needed sleep and feeling less than "the best" many moments. It continues to amaze me just how life just makes more sense when you hear God's voice pushing you forward in everything, especially through the pure and innocent sentiment of your beautiful 2 year old child!

Friday, February 09, 2007

Excuses, Excuses!

"I will play that later, mommy. I have to go do my homework!"

Can you tell we have a full time student in the house? :-) Thanx for the homework excuse, daddy! :-)

Monday, February 05, 2007

Where is Wing Man?

Jovey and I have been singing a lot more lately, as she has a great memory and actually, wonderful pitch matching skills for a 2 year old (OK, of course our kids are always good at everything they do, and especially, with me as a music teacher by trade, she's a prodigy if anyone asks!) :-)

Anyway, one of her favorite songs lately is the finger play song, "Where is Thumbkin?" She is so super cute as she gets her hands out bouncing in front of her, but she tends to sing the song in her own, special, Jovey way. I'll spare you the repeated parts, but the jest of each name of the fingers are below:

Where is Punkin? Where is punkin, Here I am!. . .
Where is Pointin? Where is Pointin, Here I am!. . .
Where is Thomas (instead of Tall man). . .
Where is (and this is my husband's all time fav) Wing man? . . .
Where is Pinky?. . .

She keeps us in stitches constantly and as she sings what she understands to be the words so proudly and loudly, we just smile, let her go and enjoy these days, since she'll be trying to correct our every word or phrase soon enough!

Monday, January 29, 2007

Girls! Girls! Girls!

So we got the wonderful news from a very positive and healthy ultrasound 2 weeks ago! We will be welcoming another little GIRL into our family in June! My husband admitted every guys' desire to have a little boy to call his own, but also was more than elated to find out that he would get to dote on yet another sweet, loving, and at times dramatic female in our household! Needless to say, Jovey is definitely a daddy's girl! I mean, who wouldn't be? He's a wonderful man!

So as we look toward the future, we look toward lots of high heel shoes, lots of play makeup, lots of tea parties, lots of dollies, and further into the future. . .lots of makeup, lots of drama, lots of hair products, lots of clothes, lots of drama, lots of prom prep, lots of boys, lots of giggling, lots of drama, lots of fun, lots of wedding prep and did I mention drama? :-) Girls are notorious for all the above and much more.

We always joke and say Jovey will be our little softball player (She can be a little brute with a mean pitching arm!), who has her make-up flawless, her ponytail pulled perfectly through her ball cap, whom all the girls from the other teams look at and say, "You gotta be kidding," but will slide with the best of them and knock the ball out of the park at least every other game! We just wonder what the next one's little personality will suggest! We can't wait to see!

Thanks, God, for providing the fun and the future that the McFarland family has to look forward to as we strive to raise wonderful, young ladies that love you, respect themselves and others, and are kind and thoughtful as they seek only you for their self worth, not boys, magazines, or the world for their approval. Help us to know what to say and do to instill YOUR love and the importance of faith in you as they grow into young adults.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Self Assured

Jovey has now adopted a new motto around here. . .well, one of many. The newest is: "I'll do it myself" or some phrase dealing with doing things herself (i.e. I'll get down by myself, I'll get it out all by myself). I knew the day was coming, but didn't expect it quite so soon. I can't wait until the "Why" question starts echoing around the house. I'm sure it won't be long!

Thursday, January 11, 2007

"Please pray for my bottom"

Yesterday, my mom and dad came up for a short visit, which Jovey always loves. The more people in the house to show attention to her and play with her, the better. In fact, she tries to go to everyone else's home after they have played with her. Maybe that should offend me. . . anyway, Joshua, mom, dad, Jovey and I had just gotten finished with a late lunch when Jovey disappeared for a while to her playroom. After a few minutes, she came running into the living room where we were chatting, and said, "Daddy, excuse me, would you please pray for my bottom?" He asked her to repeat the phrase, clarifying each word, and sure enough, she repeated the same sentence again. Of course, we were all ready to burst out laughing, as we soon got a whiff of what needed to be prayed for (and it certainly needed lots of prayers!), but held it back, as she came to us with such a serious and sincere dimeanor. Daddy obliged and he held her hands as we all bowed our heads. His prayer went something like this:

"Dear God, please help Jovey's bottom and help her learn to go poo in the potty so she can feel better. Thank you for potties. I love you God, Amen!"

Jovey looked relieved and I went to take care of the prayer concern! And to think that we hesitate to ask God for the small things!
"Is that the Pizza Man?"

Today, the cable guy came to work on our cable. Joshua hung around here to meet him at 8:30 this morning, so I took the opportunity to get a quiet shower while he got Jovey's breakfast ready. As I was getting out of the shower, I heard the doorbell ring. As Joshua went to open it, a tiny voice came from the kitchen and said, "Daddy, is that the pizza man?" Now we dont' get pizza delivered but maybe once or twice a month, but she has picked up on the whole ring the doorbell and get the pizza thing. Joshua and I had huge laughs as we let the cable guy in to do his job.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Jovey quote of the day. . .

"Daddy, may I go to my house and drink my milk, please?"

We definitely have the most polite kiddo ever. Some people say it's outrageous that I am teaching her to talk like that so early, by constantly reminding her "may I, please, thank you, yes m'am, etc.), but I say, she just comes across like a polite, well mannered little girl who has some upbringin'! ha!

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Random Jovey phrases

From now on, with all the funny and amazing things Jovey says each and every day, I will have random postings of just those phrases, just so I can look back and see just how fun it is to live with an overly verbal, very active 2 year old.

"Mommy, I'm so poud [proud] of you!"